I have danced Argentinian tango for about 10 years now and taking it up was unquestionably one of the main focal points of my life.
Having always been “the good girl” with the artistic talents (piano, art, singing, dancing, drawing) I eventually got fed up with my own soft sides and started practicing martial arts. Fencing, archery and Kung fu followed but I soon realized that it was just as easy to fall into the opposite category. I needed something to balance out the soft and the rough. Enter the Tango.
A friend introduced me to the new passion in his life and after a few haltering steps on my new-bought high heels I was slowly getting hooked as well. In the tango you confront yourself again and again. The dance demands your total attention, dedication and surrender, and that special mixture of trust and devotion coupled with total control but above all: Your ability for Listening.
Listening to the Music ( the different layers of melody. rhytmic patterns and the emotional ebb and flow of intensity as well as your own reactions to these elements) and the body-listening to your partner and his or hers intentions and impulses (conscious or sub-conscious). This is the part that takes the longest to master because no matter how much you are able to learn of fancy steps, turns and twists: if you are unable to shut of that part of your mind where you are constantely monitoring yourself and enter into a state of intens awareness and focus towards your partner the dance will be closed to you.
The door to this state of awarness is listening, a listening that goes beyond the ears and involves the whole body perception.
It also involves listening to, and by that mastering, what rises from within yourself; Initially in the learning process comes the challenges to handle the constant blows to the self image when you stumble along, spearing your partners foot with your new-bought stiletto heal while other couples float effortlessly by. Thankfully it gets better.
Oslo is a perfect city for tango dancing, with possible venues for dancing available at every night of the week, all with different profiles regarding music, floor, dancers and level.
Being a fan of the tango nuevo I am constantly on the listen-out for new music, both nuevo and non-tango, worth dancing to in addition to the traditional music. Here are some inspiring tracks:
Non-tango music worth tangoing to:
and a favorite of my boyfriend and me:
Some of my favorite tango nuevo songs along with videos of some awesome dancers:
Narcotango: Plano secuncia:
Bajofondo: Borges y Paraguay:
Bajofondo: Pa´ Bailar:
Gotan Project: Amor porteno: